Dr. Avnish Jolly,17 June:According to extract from the recently published Phannacographia India, together with the somewhat numerous list of Special Opinions below, may, therefore, suffice to indicate the principal medical properties supposed to be possessed by the fruit: –
The ripe fruit is considered to be invigorating and refreshing, fattening, and slightly laxative and diuretic; but the rind and fibre, as well as the unripe fruit, to be astringent and acid. The latter when pickled is much used on account of its stomachic and appetising qualities. Unripe mangoes peeled and cut from the stone and dried in the sun form the well-known Amchur or ambosi, so largely used as an article of diet; as its acidity is chiefly due to the presence of citric acid, it is a valuable antiscorbutic; it is also called Am-ki-chitta and Amkhushk. The blossom, kemel and bark are considered to be cold, dry, and astringent, and are used in diarrhoea. The smoke of the burning leaves is supposed to have a curative effect in some affections of the throat. According to the author of the Makhan, the Hindus make a confection of the baked pulp of the unripe fruit mixed with sugar, which in time of plague or cholera they take internally and rub all over the body; it is also stated in the same work that the midribs of the leaves calcined are used to remove warts on the eyelids. Mangoes appear to have been known to the Arabs from an early date as a pickle; they were doubtless carried to Arabian ports by Indian mariners. Ibn Batuta, who visited India AD. 1332, notices their use for this purpose. The powdered seed has been recommended by Dr. Kirkpatrick as an anthelmintic (for lumbrici) in doses of 20 to 30 grains, and also as an astringent in bleeding piles and menorrhagia." it may be here noted that this property of the seed is described by Paludanus in his Notes on Linschotan’s Travels. He writes: "Being raw it is bitter of taste and is therefore good against worms, and looseness of the belly when it is roasted." "From the fruits before ripening, a gummy and resinous substance exudes, which has the odour and consistence of turpentine, and from the bark a gum is obtained which is partly soluble in cold water." Ainslie says that the gum-resin mixed with lime- juice or oil is used in scabies and cutaneous affections. The juice of the ripe fruit dried in the sun so as to form thin cakes called Amsaffa is used as a relish and antiscorbutic. Mango bark and fntit have been lately introduced by Dr. Linguist to the notice of European physicians; he recommends it for its extraordinary action in cases of haemorrhage from the uterus, lungs, or intestines. The fluid extract of the bark or rind may be given in the following manner:- Ext. Fl. Mangil. Ind., 10 grains; water, 120 grams. Dose- One teaspoonful every hour or two, or the juice of the fresh bark may be administered with white of egg or mucilage and a little opium." In addition, it may be stated that in the Panjab and Sind a gruel made of the kernels is administered in cases of obstinate diarrhoea and bleeding piles, and that the seeds are also considered useful in asthma.
Special Opinions: "The smoke of the burning leaves is supposed to have a preventive effect in hiccough" (Civil Surgeon j. Anderson, M.B., Bijnor, North-Westem Provinces). "The unripe fruit roasted, dissolved in water and made into sherbet with sugar is freely taken by the natives to prevent sunstroke, the pulp is also rubbed over the body for the same purpose" (Assistant Surgeon N.R.Banerjee, Etawall). "The kernel of the seed is used as dysentery" (Surgeon- Major P.N Mookerjee, 32nd Regiment Madras Native Infantry, Cuttack, Orissa) "The powder of the dried kemel is useful in diarrhoea and chronic dysentery, as an astringent" (Assistant Surgeon Nehal, Saharanpur) "Unripe mangoes toasted and made into sherbet form a reputed remedy for heat apoplexy" (Assistant Surgeon T.N.Ghose, Meerut).